Messenger bag

Globe Canvas/ De Martini

Established 1947

Originally designed by Globe Canvas/De Martini in New York, the messenger bag originated in the 1950s as a bag for telephone linemen. While climbing telephone poles, they could store their tools and easily access the bag. New York bicycle messenger companies picked them up sometime in the 1970s, initially purchased in a specific colour per company to help with identification. For a long while, NYC was the only place to feature this kind of bag – until things started to spread in the 1980s.

In keeping with the classic design, contemporary messenger bags have a cross-body shoulder strap (for optimal distribution of weight) which allows you to carry all life’s baggage (wallets, keys, water, ipads etc) in a practical, ergonomic fashion. Messenger bags come in a broad variety of shapes, sizes and materials, but the most iconic one is still De Martini’s 3602 bag (as pictured above) – which is still available today.

Why on Wikiconic?
De Martini’s bag was the first messenger bag.
No alternatives (yet).
Photo credits
© Globe Canvas/ De Martini Co, New Haven, US

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